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Kerala Tourism launches virtual travel guide

Kerala Tourism has developed a QR code-based virtual travel guide aimed at conveying information about tourist spots in the state. Launching the digital tool in Fort Kochi on Monday, PA Tourism Minister Mohamed Riyas said it would provide information on distance to the nearest bus stop, train station and airport, hours opening hours of tourist sites and their telephone numbers. Currently, Fort Kochi details are available on the travel guide.

Visitors who scan the QR code displayed at major tourist spots and airports will receive an e-brochure about state tourist resorts. It will provide information on popular and lesser known tourist spots. Other technology-driven services will be popularized in the tourism sector to ensure hassle-free travel, Riyas added.

On tourist packages

The virtual guide will also transmit information on organized trips and their reservations. The e-brochure also works in automatic mode and provides tourist destination highlights, as well as short videos and high-resolution images. Pages can be downloaded to recall points of interest.

Mr Riyas said that Fort Kochi, which is Kerala’s major tourist destination, will have toilets that meet global standards by the end of the year. Additionally, ₹2.5 crore was allocated to renovate the PWD rest house on the beach front, where guests could stay at budget rates.

Guidelines for host families

Guidance was given to improve the quality of food in the hospitality sector. Homestays in Kerala will no longer require no objection certificates from local self-government institutions to obtain a license as they play a vital role in the tourism sector which has recorded 75 lakh in attendance over the past last fiscal year, despite the pandemic.

Most people are desperate to travel, in what is considered “revenge tourism”. Even though Ernakulam recorded the peak number of tourists, Wayanad and Idukki are seeing a marked increase in visitation, mainly from neighboring states, he said. The Minister added that youths and students would be enlisted in tourism clubs to help in the maintenance and marketing of tourist destinations. “The government will soon issue a notification in this regard,” he said.

₹42 crore for Fort Kochi

Mayor M. Anilkumar hoped that a ₹42 crore scheme to restore Fort Kochi beach would attract more visitors to the locality, which has a unique topography and is a melting pot of cultures. Kerala Tourism VR Manager Krishna Teja was present. KJ Maxi, MLA, said the virtual travel guide would help tourists discover places, without relying on others for primary information.